Bill MacKenty

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Designing games

Posted in Games in education on 18 - April 2007 at 06:24 PM (17 years ago). 232 views.


Mark Wagner is taking a long-needed look at teachers designing games.

Here’s why this is important.

In the (ahem) old days, educational games were usually thinly-masked drill-and-kill activities. So kids played the games, and enjoyed them, and probably learned something from the activity.  But what these games missed, and what Mark is starting to talk about, is game design. I think the game must come first. That is, it must be a playable, fun, challenging, good game. If content-specialists (teachers) start using the ideas presented in Rules of Play, we could see some fantastic works emerge.  The key point is make a good game first.

Salen and Zimmerman  talk about the relationship between rules, play, culture and games. Their work deserves accolades because they define the framework we can use when we talk about games, playing games, and designing games.

I am really looking forward to Mark’s work, and encourage other’s to check out his writing.